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J.J, Lucas 





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& &tn&t Eract 




{Reprinted from the "Indian Evangelical Revieiv.") 





One day I was telling a company of Hindus the story of the 
great love and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. A Pundit 
stopped me by saying, " Sir, you Christians believe the Lord 
Jesus Christ to be an incarnation of God and your Saviour. 
Just so we Hindus receive the revered Krishna Chand. In 
reality we are one. There is only a difference of names. Whom 
you call the Lord Jesus Christ, we call the revered Krishna 

I replied — " Not so, Pundit, there is all the difference between 
them that there is between heaven and earth. The one was 
from heaven ; the other, from Mutra." 

The Pundit — " Yes, sahib, the Lord Jesus Christ was at first 
in heaven, but afterwards came to earth, and was born in Judea. 
Just so the revered Krishna Chand came from heaven and took 
up his abode at Mutra.* Both are incarnations of the great 
God, and are Saviours of the world." 

" I wish you to answer me this question, Pundit, Is there any 
way by which we may find out whether an incarnation is true 
or false ? or may we regard any one we like as an incar- 
nation ? " 

" Certainly, sahib, there is a way of testing an incarnation. 
Whoever has not certain qualities should not be so recognised." 

" Very well, Pundit, now be so good as to tell me the marks 
by which we may recognise the true incarnation." 

In reply the Pundit said — " An incarnation of God takes 
place for the benefit of the world. When sin fills the earth and 
men are tormented by evil, God becomes incarnate to destroy 
sin. We know the true incarnation by the wonders He works ; 
an account of the wonderful works of our incarnations, Krishna, 
Ram, Parusram, Narsingh, and others, is to be found in our 
religious books. For example, when King Kans began to do 
evil and oppress men, in order to destroy him and give man 

* Hindus have often said to me that they regard Christ as the incarnation, 
who came to save the English. — J. J. L. 


relief, God became incarnate atMutra, and this incarnation * is 
called Krishna." 

I replied — " Pundit, the attributes of a true incarnation 
of God are holiness, justice, truth, love, infinite power, and 
knowledge. Do you believe that Krishna possessed these 
attributes ? " 

The Pundit—" Most certainly. Krishna had them all." 

" Very well, Pundit, tell me in what book is there an authentic 
account of Krishna's life ? " 

He replied — " In the holy Bhagwat Purana." 

" Then," said I, " according to the Bhagwat Purana, f there is 
a difference of opinion respecting Krishna. Rukm, the eldest 
son of King Bhishmak, thus spoke of Krishna : ' He, indeed, is a 
rustic and a herdsman ; his pedigree is unsettled, and whose 
son shall we call him, when the mystery as to his father and 
mother is unintelligible? One thinks him the son of the 
herdsman Nand ; another regards him as the child of Vasudev ; 
but to this day no one has discovered this secret, whose son it 
is that Krishna is.' Whence each repeats what comes into his 
own head. 


' These ignorant people speak without understanding ; 
They know not the circumstances of Krishna. 
Sixteen years he remained in the house of Nand. J 
Then every one called him a cowherd, 
Clothed in a rough woollen cloth he tended the cows ; 
Seated beneath the Indian-fig, he ate his cold victuals.' 

" Listen, Pundit, while I tell you of the birth of the Lord 
Jesus Christ, the true incarnation of God. About 1880 years 
ago he was born of a virgin, in the town of Bethlehem of Judea. 
Before His birth an angel spoke thus to the virgin : ' Behold, 
thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and 
shalt call his name Jesus. . . . The Holy Ghost shall come 
upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: 
therefore also that holy tiling which shall be born of thee shall 
be called the Son of God' (Luke i. 30). Let us now compare 

* Krishna is the eighth incarnation of Vishnu, the second god of the Hindu 
triad, and is worshipped by more than one hundred millions of people. 

t The quotations from the Bhagwat Purana have been made from Professor 
Eastwick's translation of the Hindi version of the Tenth Chapter of the Bhagwat 
Parana. — J. J- L. 

J Krishna gives the reason of his incarnation in these words, — 


' Nand and Jasoda penance did ; to me their hearts they gave. 
They wished to sec the joy of offspring ; I will go and some time (with 
them) tarry.' 


the works of Christ and of Krishna, and see which has the best 
claim to be considered the true incarnation of God. The true 
incarnation should be holy. But in the Bhagwat Purana there 
is an account of Krishna stealing the butter of the cowherdesses. 
One day the cowherdesses caught Krishna in the very act of 
stealing, and took him to his mother, complaining in these 
words, — 


' Milk, curds, butter, buttermilk, nought escapes in Braj, 
Such thefts he perpetrates, morn and eve he roves about.' 

" Krishna denied the theft, and tried to lay the blame on the 
cowherdesses, saying, — 

' Do not believe them, mother. 
These false cowherdesses tell untruths ; 
They were ever wandering about and following me .' 

" Think of this, Krishna was the thief, but by lying escaped 
the punishment of his sin ! 

"Again, it is written in the tenth chapter of the Bhagwat 
Purana that when the cowherdesses were bathing in the river 
Jumna, Krishna stole their clothes, and would not give them 
up until they came out naked, and took them from his hand. 
Hear him, — 


' Thus will I not give them, I swear by Nand : 
One by one come forth, then receive ye back your clothes. 
Now let each join her hands and advance, then I will 
give the clothes.' 

" The cowherdesses said, — 


' "Why does Nand's darling act deceitfully to us, simple maidens of Braj ? 
He has tricked us ; our consciousness and sense are gone, such pranks 

have you played, Hari.* 
Taking courage, we have done what we are ashamed to do : Now, 

Lord of Braj, perform your part.' 

" This narrative shows that Krishna was not holy. Surely 
such a one as Krishna is worthy of punishment, and not of 
praise and worship." 

To this the Pundit replied — " Sahib, you are speaking about 
Krishna's sports. He took the clothes of the cowherdesses to 
teach them a lesson." 

" But suppose, Pundit, one of the disciples of Krishna should 
steal and lie, and taking the clothes of women while they are 
bathing, should say that this was his sport, or that he meant to 
give them a lesson, would you excuse him ? " 

The Pundit replied — " Samarlhi Jco dash nahiri Jiai" i.e. 
" The Almighty can do no sin." 

* Hari, another name for Krishna. 


"Very well, Pundit, suppose I grant that the Almighty 
cannot sin, yet it cannot be proven from Krishna's life that 
he is worthy of this title. He was in the power of women * and 
you know it is written, — 


' He who is in the power of frail ones, 
How can he be called Almighty ? ' 

No one can prevail against the Almighty. Many prevailed 
over Krishna. For example, in the war with King Jarasindhu, 
Krishna was defeated and forced to flee for his life. He also 
fought with Eaja Dauda in order to obtain his mare, which at 
night became a beautiful woman ; but he neither conquered the 
Eaja nor got the wonderful mare. It is said that Krishna and 
all his family were destroyed by the curse of the Rishi Durbasa. 
The story is this. On one occasion Krishna and Balram with 
their families drank to excess, and fell to slaying each other. 
At last only Krishna and Balram were left, and they resolved 
to become ascetics. One day, as Krishna was sleeping in the 
forest, a hunter mistook him for a beast of prey and shot an 
arrow at him, which lodged in his foot and caused his death. 
Now tell me, Pundit, whether we ought to consider Krishna 
Almighty ? He himself said that — 


' Those alone may be said to have power in the world 
Who perforin service to their parents.' 

And yet he and Balram lamented 'that this was always in 
their thoughts, that to her of whom they were born, that to her 
they had never at any time been a source of enjoyment .... 
they had uselessly wasted their existence in a strange house, 
and that their parents,! for their sake, had suffered much 
calamity, while they had never served them in any way.' 

" Even if we admit that Krishna was a great person, yet all 
right thinking people will say that the greater the person the 
greater his guilt if he sins. If the judge steals, will you say 

* The cowherdesses thus reproached Krishna : "Lord, formerly, indeed, you 
were showing us much favour ; you took us by the hand, ami led us with you 
in your -wanderings ; now you have gained royal power, and, at the bidding of 
a woman of the city, Kubja, you have sent a letter to us advising penance. We, 
weak women, uninstructed in holy rites, have not so much as learnt of our 
spiritual preceptor the initiatory mystical prayer to be addressed to the^ patron 
Deity; whence, then, should we have spiritual discernment? To him, Krishna, 
nr childhood's love was given ; what have we known of the rites of penance ? " 
t Nand, the father of Krishna, thus laments, — 

' Tell me of the welfare of my son, witli whom you always remain ; 
Does he ever remember me ? Without him we sutler much pain. 
When he left us he promised to all that he would return : the 
promised period has long since elapsed.' 


that he ought to be forgiven because he is such a great man ? 
God forbids every kind of sin — as stealing, lying, murder, 
deceit, adultery, etc. Now, will an incarnation of God commit 
the very sins He has forbidden ? Listen to Sisupal, who knew 
Krishna well, and who speaks of him in the tenth chapter of the 
Bhagwat Purana. ' In this assembly are Dritarashtr,I)uryodhan, 
Bhism, Kam, Dhronacharya, and others — all men of great 
wisdom and dignity ; but on the present occasion the judgment 
of all has become impaired. Very great Munis remain seated 
while worship is paid to the son of the cowherd Nand, and no 
one has said anything. He who, born in Braj, ate the broken 
victuals of the cowherd lads, has in this assembly obtained 
supremacy and dignity. 


' All have thoughtlessly pronounced him great, 
Having taken the strength of the king of gods. 
To whom have they given it ? ' 

' He who contracted friendship with cowherdesses and cow- 
herds, him have they made chief in holiness in this assembly. 
He who stole and ate, from house to house, milk, curds, butter- 
milk, and butter, all have united in extolling. He who in roads 
and steps down to the river received alms, to him, forsooth, 
reverence has been paid here. He who by force or fraud 
enjoyed the wives of others, to him all, with unanimous con- 
sent, have first given the mark in the forehead. He who 
abolished the worship of Indra in Braj, and founded that of a 
mountain, and afterwards, having caused all the materials for 
the worship to be brought to the mountain, himself by a 
stratagem devoured them ; to him, notwithstanding, there 
comes no feeling of shame. One whose caste, rank, and 
mother, father, family, and duties are unsettled, all have 
reverenced as the Invisible and Eternal One.' Listen to another 
witness who knew Krishna well. Indra, who is called the 
' Ptuler of the gods,' thus speaks of Krishna in the tenth chapter 
of the Bhagawat Purana : ' The riches of the inhabitants 
of Braj have increased, and from this very cause they have 
become excessively proud. 


' They have abandoned invocation, penance, and fasting as regards me, 
And have called upon themselves dearth and poverty. 
They have regarded Krishna, who is but a man, as a Deity, 
And opine that his words are true. 
He is but a child, foolish and ignorant, 
Very loquacious, and filled with pride. 
Now I will remove his haughtiness ; 
I will destroy his herds, and deprive him of wealth.' 


" Now, Pundit, when intelligent witnesses like these speak 
thus of Krishna, how can we regard him as a true incarnation 
of God ? Listen while I tell you a little about the Lord Jesus 
Christ, and show you that He was indeed true and holy. He 
was obedient to His parents. He grew in favour with God 
•and man. In Him was no sin of any kind. In His heart no 
evil thoughts, and in His mouth no evil words. He did many 
deeds of mercy. He was all-powerful. The living and the 
dead, water and wind, obeyed Him. He made the lame to walk. 
He cleansed lepers. He opened the eyes of the blind. He 
gave life to the dead. For proof of all this read the following- 
passages from the Gospels : — Matt. viii. 2, 3 ; Luke vii. 11-15 ; 
Matt. xx. 30-34 ; John xi. A ruler of the Jews, named 
Nicodemus, who saw the wonderful works of the Lord Jesus, 
thus testified : ' Eabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come 
from God : for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, 
except God be with him' (John iii. 2). In the Bhagwat 
Purana we read that Krishna and Balram once went to the 
house of a Kishi named Sandipan, and with clasped hands 
stood before him, praying to him in these words, — 


' Show favour to us, Prince of Rishis ; 
Give heed to us, and grant us the boon of wisdom.' 

The Eishi taught them the fourteen sciences — the knowledge 
of futurity, astrology, physic, etc. Then they thanked him 
saying : ' .Sire, though one become incarnate through many 
births, and gave very much in each, still an equivalent for 
learning could not be given ; however, do you, with due regard 
to our ability, favour us with your commands for a recom- 
pense for your instruction ; then we, having given in proportion 
to our ability, and received your blessings, will depart home.' 
Nor is this the only proof that Krishna was ignorant, and had 
to be taught. On one occasion he was in great doubt whether 
he should go to the help of the kings in danger, or assist the 
Pandavas to perform the royal sacrifice. Hear his prayer 
to Udho to tell him what to do : 

' Udho, you are my friend ; from my heart and eyes you are never separate. 
Urgent business calls me in both directions ; whither shall I go first ? Say, 

There are kings in heavy distress, sustaining grief, and placing hope in me. 
Here tin' Pandavas have together prepared the sacrifice : Thus speaking the 
Supreme ' Being addressed him.' 

* Krishna is also spoken of in the Bhagwat Purana as " The First Male, the 
everlasting God of gods, the divine Krishna Chand ;" "The God of gods ; " 
"The Illusive Power." 


Again, Krishna was deceived by the false report that his father 
was in prison, and wept bitterly. These instances show that 
he was not omniscient. We all agree that the true incarnation 
of God should be merciful. But there is nut the semblance of 
this grace in Krishna. He slew thousands of people, and laid 
waste many countries. He caused Jarasinclhu to be slain, 
whose praise he himself once sang in these words : ' Sire, just 
as formerly, in other ages, existed just and munificent monarchs, 
even so now, in this age, you exist. As they formerly fulfilled 
the wishes of those who asked of them, so do you now perform 
our desire.' No wonder that the wife of Jarasindhu, weeping 
and beating her breast, came and stood before the divine 
Krishna, and, having joined her hands, said : ' Bravo, bravo, 
Lord ! You merit encomiums for such a deed that you have 
taken the life of him who gave you all he had. Such is the 
friendship you show to him who devoted to you his son, his 
wealth, and his body.' 


, ' Assuming a deceitful form, you have used both force and fraud ; 
This is the renown which entering the world, you have acquired.' 

" Now listen, Pundit, while I tell you of the great love of the 
Lord Jesus Christ. He so loved us, sinners, that in order to 
satisfy God's law which demanded our lives, He gave His own 
life as a substitute. He gave up ease and glory, and at last 
His life, in order to remove our sins. Listen to the word of 
God : ' When we were yet without strength, in due time 
Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man 
will one die : yet peradventure for a good man some would even 
dare to die. But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, 
while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us ' (Bom. v. 6-8). 
Ah, assuredly no one ever loved us, poor sinners, as did the 
Lord Jesus. Another attribute of the true incarnation of God 
is justice. And yet Krishna slew with his own hand the 
innocent washerman of Kans because he refused to give up 
the clothes of his master. Bead the words of the Bhagwat 
Purana : ' The divine Krishna Chand, being filled with ire, 
struck him such a blow obliquely, that his head (the washer- 
man's) flew off like an ear of corn.' Bead again in the Bhag- 
wat Purana how Krishna violently seized and married Bukmini, 
the daughter of King Bhishmak and the affianced of Sisupal. 
Bukm, the brother of Bukmini, was very angry with Krishna 
because he had carried off his sister, and thus spoke to him : 
' Ho, treacherous boor ! What knowest thou of the conduct of 
princes. Just as in thy childhood thou stolest milk and curds, 


so now, too, thou hast come here also and carried off the fair 
one.' I leave it to you, Pundit, to say whether Krishna did 
ricdit or wrong in this matter. Even the enemies of the Lord 
Jesus Christ bore witness to His uprightness (Matt. xxii. 16). 
He not only did not wish to injure His enemies, but on the 
contrary He prayed for them. He thus taught His disciples : 
' Love your enemies, bless them that hate you, and pray for 
them which despitefully use you and persecute you ' (Matt, 
v. 44). God is true. Hence His incarnation must be true. 
But this attribute of God cannot be found in Krishna. He 
taught others to lie and deceive. For instance, at the request 
of Krishna, Judhishthir told a lie ; for this sin his finger wasted 
away, and he had to suffer in hell. Again, when Krishna was 
guilty of adultery with Badha, her husband Ayanghosh arrived 
unexpectedly, and at once Krishna assumed the form of Kali, 
and Badha began to worship him. Hence we have their images 
worshipped to this day, viz. Krishna, Kali, Badha, Ayanghosh, 
and Kotila. 

" Again, listen to the advice Krishna gave to Arjun and 


' Assume the appearance of Brahmans and so journey : 
And by force or stratagem, slay your enemies.' 

" He who himself deceives, and so teaches his disciples, 
cannot be the true incarnation ; nor can he be pleasing to 
God. Listen to what the Bhagwat Burana says about this, — 


' The invocation, the rosary, the denominational and sectorial * marks, all of 
them are useless. 
The vain-minded man plays his antics to no purpose; the true only please + 

" Bead the life of the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will 
acknowledge that He never told a falsehood or deceived. 
When His enemies came to take His life, He might have 
saved it by deception. He regarded the truth as better than 

" No one can forgive sins who is a sinner himself. "Whoever 
reads the Brem Sagar and other religious books of the Hindus 
must admit that Krishna was a great sinner. The Lord Jesus 
Christ was free from all sin. God so loved us as to send the 
Lord Jesus Christ to bear our sins. He did bear them, and 

* Of a lotus, trident, etc., made on the body or forehead of worshippers of 
Vishnu and other gods. 

t Another name of an incarnation of the god Vishnu. 



died on account of them. He now calls all laden with sin to 
come unto Him. Hear His words: 'Come unto me, all ye 
that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest ' 
(Matt. xi. 28). 

" The true incarnation ought to point out very clearly the 
way of salvation. Muchkund was anxious to know how He 
might be saved, and this is the answer Krishna gave him. 
1 Hearken, Muchkund ! The matter is exactly as thou hast 
said, but I will point out to thee a means of salvation, which 
use. Thou, for the sake of territory, wealth, and women, hast 
from the time of obtaining thy kingdom performed many 
unjust acts, which injustice will not leave you without the 
performance of penance. Wherefore go into the north country 
and perform * penance, whereupon thou shalt quit this body 
and be re-born in the house of a Eishi, and then thou shalt 
obtain final beatitude.' This shows that Krishna could not 
pardon sin and give beatitude to his disciples. _ They must 
obtain these by penances and transmigration into various 
bodies. Krishna taught that Brahmans were equal to himself, 
and that heaven could be entered by reverencing Brahmans. 
Hear him. 


' Let none injure a Brahman ; let none seize on a Brahman's portion : 
Keep not back that which is vowed in the heart to be given ; speak the truth 

to Brahmans : . . . . 

He who takes what he has given to a Brahman, on him Yam inflicts a punish- 
ment so great ! ,,-■,, ... ■, i 
Remain the servant of Brahmans ; suffer patiently all faults committed by 

Brahmans : A .„ 

Who reverences Brahmans, reverences me ; let none suppose a clinerence 

between me and Brahmans. 
He who imagines a difference between me and Brahmans, shall tall into hell ; 
And he who reverences a Brahman shall obtain me, and without doubt shall 

go to heaven.' 

"Very well, Pundit, Krishna said there was no difference 
between a Brahman and himself. Now you and I know that 
a Brahman is just like the rest of us— a sinner in the sight of 
God. A Brahman cannot answer God for his own sins, how 
can he answer for ours ? Hence neither Krishna nor a Brah- 
man can give pardon or open heaven to us. But the Lord. 

* " Sire, the divine Krishna Chand said to King Judhishthir, Judhishthir ! 
I by degrees, destroy all the wealth of him to whom I show favour, because 
brothers, kinsmen, wife, sons and all relatives abandon the man destitute ol 
wraith, and then the desire of living as a devotee springs up in his mind ; Irom 
becoming a devotee, he sets himself free from the fascinations of wealth and 
kin and becomes divested of affection, whereby he worships me with Ins whole 
heart ; from the happy influence of his worship, he obtains the unshaken 
beatitude of reunion with the Deity." 


Jesus Christ can. His name teaches this. Jesus means 
Saviour. Christ means Anointed, or the one set apart by God, 
our heavenly Father, to be our Saviour. When on earth He 
' went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of 
the devil.' How did Krishna spend his time ? Let the 
' Saintly Shukadev ' relate. ' Sire, having taken sixteen 
thousand one hundred and eight wives, the divine Krishna 
Chand began to disport himself joyfully in the city of Dwarika, 
and the eight queens, during the eight watches, remained in 
the service of Hari (Krishna). Always when they arose at 
early dawn, one would wash his face ; another having applied 
a fragrant paste to his body, would assist him in bathing ; 
another would prepare for him, and cause him to eat, food 
of six flavours ; another would make nice betels with cloves, 
cardamoms, mace, and nutmegs for her beloved one, and give 
it to him to eat ; another would select fair raiment and 
ornaments studded with jewels, and having perfumed and 
prepared them, would cause the Supreme Being to put them 
on ; another having arrayed him in the necklace of forest 
flowers, would sprinkle him with rose water, and rub him 
with saffron and sandal-oil ; another was fanning him ; and 
another manipulating his feet. . . .' 


' Of the chief of Yadu each queen produced a son, 
Each a daughter, fair as Lakshmi, each ten sons ; brave sons were they. 
One hundred sixty and one thousand ; so vast a host, and all alike. 
These were the sons of Krishna ; of infinite accomplishments, strength, and 

" Thus, Pundit, according to the Bhagwat Purana, Krishna 
wasted his time. Eead the Gospels and see how the Lord 
Jesus Christ never once thought of His own ease or pleasure. 
He thought ever of the welfare of others, lie came not to 
be ministered unto, but to minister, and give His life a 
ransom for many (Matt. xx. 28). He so loved us that He 
gave His own life to save us from the punishment due to 
us on account of our sins, and to open heaven for us. Now, 
Pundit, compare Krishna and Christ, and say which is the 
true incarnation. ' Be careful lest you throw away precious 
gold for the sake of a worthless bit of glass. Be careful 
lest you drink poison instead of the water of life.' Will 
you be the disciple of Krishna, who, according to your 
revered Bhagwat Purana, was a thief, a liar, an adulterer, and 
a murderer ; who spent his time in war or in idleness among 
women ; who came into the world to kill Kans, according to 



one story, or on account of his love for Kadha (a woman) 
according to another; whose life, your own books being 
witnesses, was one round of revelry and drunkenness, seduction 
and murder ? Will you receive such a one to be your Lord and 
Saviour ? or will you receive the Lord Jesus Christ, who came 
from God into the world to save us from our sins ? He ' did 
no sin, neither was guile found in His mouth ; who, when He 
was reviled, reviled not again.' He was ' holy, harmless, un- 
dented, separate from sinners.' 'He was manifested to take 
away our sins, and in Him is no sin.' He gave His life a 
ransom for ours : He rose from the dead on the third day, and 
receiving all power in heaven and earth, He sent forth His 
disciples to preach the good news of the forgiveness of sin and 
eternal life to every one, everywhere, who believes in Him and 
becomes His disciple. He is now seated at the right hand of 
God, ready to give pardon and peace and heaven to all who 
believe and obey Him. Beloved Pundit, believe in Him now 
and confess Him as your Saviour. He is able and willing to 
save you. He is worthy of your love and confidence. Make 
no delay. ' Behold, now is the accepted time. Behold, now 
is the day of salvation.' " 


Kjaulord = 

Syracuse, N. Y. 
Stockton, Calif. 


Krishna pariksha; or, Krishna tested : a 

Princeton Theological Seminary-Speer Library 

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